NBA

Who Is Mark Tatum?

The 2020 NBA draft will have a whole new look Wednesday night. With the coronavirus (COVID-19) still wreaking havoc in the sports world, the draft will be held virtually this year. NBA Commissioner Adam Silver and Mark Tatum will be announcing first- and second-round picks from the ESPN Studios throughout the night. Who is Mark Tatum?

The 2020 NBA draft is finally here

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The 2020 draft comes Wednesday night with loads of anticipation. In recent years, it’s been known who the clear-cut No. 1 selection would be before NBA Commissioner Adam Silver stepped up to the podium. This year is a different story. Trade rumors are swirling and several mock drafts have different players being chosen with the top pick.

Anthony Edwards, a 6-foot-5 freshman guard out of Georgia, seems to be the slight favorite to be selected at No. 1. As of this writing, barring any last-minute deals, the Minnesota Timberwolves hold the top pick in the draft. Edwards is a scorer and even though he played just one year at Georgia, he appears NBA ready.

LaMelo Ball is another player who could be chosen with the first pick. Ball, the brother of New Orleans Pelicans guard Lonzo Ball, is a 6-foot-6 point guard with great court awareness. In most recent mock drafts, Ball and Edwards have been flip-flopping for the No. 1 and No. 2 slots. Memphis center James Wiseman is another in the mix to go first for a team seeking a big man.

The 2020 NBA draft will be held at ESPN

Like the NBA season, the 2020 NBA draft has been impacted by COVID-19. Since 1975, the NBA draft has been held in June, but with the season delayed four months because of the pandemic, the NBA is holding the draft on Nov. 18, the latest it’s ever been held in league history, according to CBS Sports. The date of the draft had been pushed back multiple times.

It’s been a tough year for both the players and the team scouts as in-person workouts were canceled due to COVID-19. The draft was originally scheduled to take place at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, New York. It will now be held virtually and the draft selections will be announced from the ESPN studios in Connecticut.

The Minnesota Timberwolves, Golden State Warriors, and Charlotte Hornets hold the top three spots in the draft. The Boston Celtics have the most picks in the first round, picking three times. Boston’s first pick is at No. 14. Then they are scheduled to pick again at No. 26 and No. 30.

Who is Mark Tatum?

Like the NFL was forced to do, the NBA will be holding its draft virtually. NBA commissioner Adam Silver and deputy commissioner Mark Tatum will announce the first- and second-round selections from ESPN’s studios. Silver has been running the show since 2014, but who is Mark Tatum?

Like Silver did under former NBA Commissioner David Stern, Tatum serves as deputy commissioner and chief operating officer of the NBA. Prior to joining the NBA in 1999, Tatum was known more as a baseball guy. He played collegiately at Cornell. He began his professional work in the sports field as a member of Major League Baseball’s Corporate Sponsorship and Marketing department.

Tatum oversees the NBA’s business operations and the NBA’s G League. Tatum is also the NBA Draft Lottery host. He will also be making the announcements during the second round of the NBA draft. Tatum is a 1991 graduate of Cornell University with a degree in business management and marketing.